NEW ZEALAND WEEK AKA 'FOOD FOR THOUGHT' IS ON FROM NOW TILL 18 MARCH AT TRADERS HOTEL KUALA LUMPUR SO GO THERE AND THE BEST OF NEW ZEALAND HALAL MEAT, POULTRY, FRUITS AND WINES AT ALL THE RESTAURANTS IN TRADERS HOTEL.
EVER GENEROUS MALAYSIANS AND EVEN A FEW NON-MALAYSIANS RALLIED TO RAISE A STAGGERING RM 520,000 FOR VICTIMS OF LAST YEAR'S MASSIVE EARTHQUAKE IN CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND.
Left; New Zealand High Commissioner HE David Pine, Mayor of Christchurch Bob Parker, Richard Tankersley Chairman of Malaysia New Zealand Chamber of Commerce and Joanna Parker
Jane Duker, Camille Pallicchi and Madam Arti Prasetya Pine, wife of the High Commissioner of New Zealand
Chandra Taylor, husband Captain Ken Taylor, Defence Advisor from British High Commissioner and Madam Gail Featherstone, wife of the British High Commissioner
Guest, Tan Sri Halim Saad, Executive Chairman of Markmore Energy, Datuk Muhammad Feisol Haji Hassan, president of Special Olympics Malaysia and Dato W.S.W Davidson , lawyer with Azman Davidson & Co
Gail Featherstone with Iris Tan
Left, Puan Sri Habibah, wife of Tan Sri Salle Dr Mohd Noor,Professor Dr Ismail Abdul Aziz, Professor Dato Dr Azizan Abu Samah and Datin Dr Lela Yasmin
Dr Mei Ling Young of International Medical University, Associate Professor Elajsolan, Sharon Ho and Tan Sri Emeitus Professor Datuk Dr Augustine S.H Ongof Akademi Sains Malaysia
Richard Tankersley, Iris Tan, Chief Event Officer of The Star and Kee Hua Chee, just a star of glorious magnitude
Lawyer from Shearn Delamore S.Radhakrishnan, Tengku Nasariah Tg Syed Ibrahim, Iris Tan and Professor Dr Irmawati Ramli
Chris Hendersonof Cognition Education, Sevaran Kaur and Dato Chef Wan
Stuart Soo, MD of Furley Bioextracts and son Kelvin Soo Quai Siang, Futley's Lab Manager
Samantha Walton, Karen Johnson and Jeff Sanders
Kim Teh, Suraya Mansor and Tam Poh Poh
Richard Tankersley with Chef Wan
Dato Oh Siew Nam, Dato Yap Teiong Choon, Ang Kim Jhew and David Ng
Iris Tan and Kavin Martinus
Kavin Martinus and Kee Hua Chee
Emirates country manager Kavin Martinus and sales manager Peter Simon
THAT EARTHQUAKE OCCURED ON 22 FEBRUARY 2012 AND TODAY IS 19 FEBRUARY 2012 WHILE THE CHEQUE PRESENTATION WAS ON 13 FEBRUARY 2012, JUST 9 DAYS TO THE DREADFUL DAY.
WE MALAYSIANS HAVE BEEN CHOSEN TO BE BLESSED BY GOD AS WE DO NOT SUFFER FROM EARTHQUAKES, TYPHOONS, TORNADOES, CYCLONES, TSUNAMIS, VOLCANOES, STORMS, MASSIVE FLOODINGS OR VIOLENT UPHEAVALS OF NATURE SO WE ASSUME OTHER COUNTRIES ARE LIKE US, IMMUNE TO SUCH CATASTROPHES. SO WHEN TRAGEDIES STRIKE, WE MUST HELP AS MUCH AS WE CAN THOUGH IRONICALLY, NEW ZEALAND IS A FIRST WORLD NATION AND FINANCIALLY RICHER THAN US!
But death knows no creed, religion, sex or status and the scythe of Death strikes at will so every penny counts. The Mayor of Christchurch Bob Parker even flew into Kuala Lumpur to personally receive the RM 520,000 cheque to prove how important our donation was, even though it did not run into tens of millions. Fund raiser Richard Tankersley could have given the cheque to New Zealand High Commissioner but of course it was infinitely nicer for the Mayor and Mayoress of Christchurch to come personally. Mind you, many poor Malaysians could do with the money but we are all brothers in the end and must help each other when tragedy strikes.
Generous Malaysians, mindful of our blessed country free of earthquakes, volcanoes, typhoons, tsunamis or violent upheavals of nature, donated RM 520,000 to the victims of last year’s Christchurch earthquake.
Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker and wife mayoress Joanna flew in from New Zealand to accept the cheque from Richard Tankersley, Chairman of Malaysia New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in a ceremony hosted by New Zealand High Commissioner HE David Pine at his residence in Jalan Langgak Golf.
The Christchurch earthquake occurred on 22 February 2011 and the cheque presentation in Kuala Lumpur was on 13 February 2012, just nine days to the day. The fourth deadliest earthquake in history claimed 185 lives from 20 nationalities and a few non-Malaysians also donated to the local fund.
Says fund-raiser Richard Tankersley, an old hand in Malaysia after staying here for 34 years, “The bulk of the RM 520,000 came from Malaysians but an Iraqi Arab Ala Hussein bin Saleh who used to live in New Zealand but is now based in Malaysia running restaurants gave RM 23,000 and even Cat Stevens, now Yusuf Islam, gave cash! Yusuf Islam was in Cyberjaya recently to record and when he heard, he contributed. The biggest amount was RM 100,000 from a University of Canterbury alumni whileTan Sri Halim Saad, always ready to help but refuses any credit, donated RM 75,000.”
Tankersley is particularly proud we were the first outside New Zealand to launch such a fund. Through the New Zealand High Commission’s network and Tankersley’s contacts, many Malaysians rose to the occasion and chipped in. Echoed Bob Parker, the Christchurch mayor who thanked us for our generosity, “We will rebuild Christchurch with quake resistant buildings and turn New Zealand’s second city once again into a beautiful, people-friendly place.”
Also held in conjunction with the cheque presentation was ‘Food for Thought’, a month long food festival from 16 February till 18 March at the restaurants in Traders Hotel. New Zealand is in the unique position of being able to produce food five times more than its population needs so it is indeed a proverbial land of milk and honey.
New Zealand’s meat, dairy products and fruits are internationally acclaimed. New Zealand’s High Commissioner HE David Pine says, “We chose the theme ‘Food for Thought’ because Malaysia, like most nations, bear the global brunt of rapidly rising rates of diabetes and heart disease and New Zealand believes it can co-operate with Malaysian food producers to help.
“Food for Thought is part of New Zealand Week which aims to expand scientific co-operation between New Zealand and Malaysia while encouraging more Malaysians into science. Food for Thought focuses on climate change and food challenges as they are problems we all share. We will be promoting New Zealand’s foods like halal meat, salmon, dairy products, fruits, confectionary, wine and our delicious green shell mussels.”
Malaysia’s top cook Datuk Chef Wan was emcee and host, making wisecracks and amusing the high-powered crowd by extolling the virtues of the aforesaid green mussels and New Zealand’s abundant, fresh produce which he declared was among the best on earth.
Trade Commissioner Fiona Acheson said, “Developing advanced foods for the 21st century with proven health benefits for various conditions is the new frontier for New Zealand’s food and beverage companies.”